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The Steam Engine (vape calc)

Published by Dampmaskin in the blog Dampmaskin's blog. Views: 3106

So I made this coil wrapping calculator, and I couldn't think of a creative name to begin with, so I called it "vape calc". Later, I pondered my own ECF nick, Dampmaskin, which is Norwegian for "steam engine". I realized that the name "Steam Engine" had more more schwung to it, was marginally more creative, and with a tip of the hat to Babbage's clever contraption, it would suit a calculator nicely.

I first started touting the calculator in this thread on the New Member Forum (yes, I can be trigger happy), but maybe a blog post is a better place to track the progress. Here's a recap of the development thus far:

February 10, 2014:
The project started as a simple Ohm's law calculator, plus a simple calculator that allowed the user to set a target resistance and find the total length of the resistance wire. Later in the evening I added the number of coil wraps.

February 11:
Added support for dual and triple coils (series and parallel), and quad coils (series-parallel). Support for inputting the leg length, and displaying the power loss in the legs (in percent) also turned out to be a nice feature if I must say so myself. Added some more wire gauge presets for kanthal, and some nichrome gauges.

February 12:
A rudimentary DIY e-juice calculator was added. Not much to write home about yet, but to be honest I'm not sure which features to add and which to avoid.

February 21:
More gauges.

February 24:
Save the state of the coil wrap calculator by pressing a button. This is saved to a cookie in the browser. Load it back later with another button. Keepin' it simple. And a reset button. Everybody likes a reset button when confronted with a new and scary interface with lots of knobs.

Also added input for wrap spacing, which returns the helix angle, and takes it into consideration when counting wraps. Suddenly the "coil width" became meaningful for widely spaced coils as well, not only for micro coils. Added inputs for fractional inches (e.g. 5/64).

February 26:
Name changed from "vape calc" to "the Steam Engine".

March 2:
I realized that the interface had become somewhat cluttered with inputs, so I introduced yet another button. Yes I know. But this button is a "Simple/Advanced" toggle that hides four out of the nine inputs by default. Hopefully that makes it less confusing to the newcomer, and easier to get started with.

March 4:
More UI cleanup, and made it possible to choose between a few different css themes.

March 12:
I added a battery drain calculator. See my blog post about battery drain for the details.

Plans for the future:

  • Support for twiddling with the amperage in the simple Ohm's law calculator.
  • More gauges; I just discovered a new link to some flat ribbon kanthal data in the thread comments.
  • Some more presets for the coil calculator, as a kind of addition to the "default" preset.
Suggestions for more features or other improvements are always welcome.

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